Of Mulberry, Silk, Trade Routes, Gardens

Purples, magenta, brownstone. A mostly-vanished garden that included living treasures (maybe as cuttings?) brought back from a shipping trade route to and from Canton, China. One bumblebee in the rain, the humming sound heard among all the wisteria in bloom. (An arrow points to the bee in the photo below, right.)

“The Russell estate occupied all of the block bounded by High, Court, Pearl and Washington Streets. Extensive grounds behind Russell House sloping down to Pearl Street were planted with formal gardens which included boxwood imported from England and plants brought from China by Samuel Russell. A double stair of intricate ironwork was added to the rear of the house at the time the portico was enclosed. It leads from the first floor down to the garden lawn.” – Wikipedia. And oh yes, silks – can you imagine how exotic and rare this textile must have been when it arrived and was unpacked from a voyage around the planet? Thoughts of that and what the Russell garden must have looked like provided fuel for knitting a cabled gray tweed sweater. The colorful tweed stripe at the neck inspired by both that petunia’s color and thoughts of how the silk was produced by silkworms munching mulberry leaves.